[CES 2018] The Lenovo X1 Yoga 2018 has been officially unveiled at CES 2018. This YOGA and touch-enabled cousin of the X1 Carbon (also updated at CES) has everything that made the X1 Series great into a multi-mode and slightly beefed up form factor which makes it the “do it all” X1 laptop from Lenovo.

In case you are not familiar with the differences between the X1 Carbon and the X1 Yoga, the X1 Yoga has these features the X1 Carbon does not:

  • A 360-degree screen folding
  • An integrated digitizer pen
  • Far-field audio microphones

The industrial design of the ThinkPad X1 YOGA 2018 is very faithful to last year’s model, with small changes, but the same overall look and feel. The entire surface of the laptop is covered with a very resistant “soft-paint” which provides excellent grip and abrasion resistance. The term “soft-paint” refers to the leathery feel of the surface, and we have not had major scratches on a ThinkPad X1 with normal usage.

The YOGA multimode display is great if you want to read, or setup a desk workstation with full-size keyboard and mouse. Using the laptop in “Stand” mode (resting on its keyboard) will make the screen to be much closer to your eyes. This is an excellent way to maximize comfort in a hotel room for example.

The 14” display IPS LCD touch has a resolution of 2660×1440, which may be not the highest you can get, but well sufficient for having sharp details. Not everyone benefits from having an exceedingly sharp screen, and that affects battery life negatively as well. Not everyone feels they need support for touch-screens, but those who do quickly find it indispensable.

The display is certified for Dolby Vision HDR video playback, which is one of the strictest standards on the market. Hulu, Netflix, and other major streaming providers will stream HDR content if they detect the capability on the device. Even if you don’t watch HDR content, you will benefit from this screen because it has a very high brightness of 500 NITs. Most laptops can reach 300 NITs which makes things just readable on a bright day, 500 NIT makes looking at the screen much more comfortable in the same environment.

With four USB ports (2x USB-C Thunderbolt 3 and 2x USB 3.0), the connectivity options are excellent for a laptop this size. There is also a multi-card reader, which is a very popular request that is no longer present on many competitors (SD, MMC, SDHC, SDXC). If you deal with projectors often, the full-size HDMI connector means that you don’t require a dongle, unless you bump into an old VGA projector.

The USB-C Thunderbolt 3 can also connect to Thunderbolt or Display Port screens, including multiple 4K displays to maximize productivity.

If you want to, there’s a dock connector and a Native adapter (not RJ45). While many people can be just fine with a USB to Ethernet adapter, it is not as optimal as having a native Gb Ethernet adapter ready, especially if you dock your computer every day.

Like its cousin, the X1 YOGA 2018 has also been designed to pass 12 Mil-STD 810G tests for military hardware ruggedness. At 13.11” x 9.01” x .06” (333 x 229 x 17.05mm) and 3.08 lbs (1.4 kg) it is a thin and light laptop that will accomodate most usage models. It is neither too small or too big/heavy.

The camera has the Lenovo ThinkShutter physical lens blocker to prevent spying. This year’s ThinkPad Yoga X1 has an interesting Wake-on-Voice function to call on the digital assistant to help. This is a feature that Lenovo had previously deployed with Microsoft Cortana; Amazon Alexa is also supported this time. There’s an option to have a Windows Hello camera can can log you in, but it comes at an extra cost.

There is good support for WiFi AC (+Dual-band +2×2 MIMO), which is the fastest consumer standard at the moment, along with Bluetooth 4.2. For travelers, the Lenovo ThinkPad X1 Carbon Gen6 includes an LTE broadband option which should work with virtually ant LTE network in the world (Fibocom L850-GL).

Starting at $1889 and available this month, the ThinkPad X1 Yoga is the default X1 to consider because it is a feature superset of the others. If you need a lighter clamshell, the X1 Carbon might fit the bill, and if your usage is tablet-first, the X1 Tablet would be a good one to look at.

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